The most Popular Posts of the past seven days.

Sep 21, 2019

ANOTHER Best & Worst State Capitals list

Montgomery ranks right in the middle...#24

They write: 

24. Montgomery, Alabama

A low household income score is the biggest factor in Montgomery’s ranking. However, it still enjoys low rent and home prices. The annual cost of necessities, such as transportation and healthcare, isn’t too bad either at $17,759.

Here's the full ranking of the 50 Capitals.

Modern Rules

(One of the panelists at a Democratic Presidential Candidate forum in Iowa last night, a Northern Iowa Student Government rep named Elle Boeding...) "...was turned off by Biden at times interrupting a newspaper columnist on the panel Lyz Lenz:
“In this specific setting, interrupting a woman is a no go ... I don’t know what it will take for him to connect the dots,” Boeding said.

Huh? Glad she is only a student.

Does that mean a man can interrupt another man, and a woman can interrupt a man but...? 

See the Reuters story HERE

The States of Less Government Want More?

     Alabama is one of opposed to 23 states and some municipalities that are in court trying to force the Federal Government to let the states impose cleaner air standards than the Feds have established.

The closest to The South is North Carolina.
Georgia? Nah.
Mississippi, Please not.
Alabama? Of course not.
...and so forth.

You can read the court filing by the other states HERE.

I guess state's right's only applies when a state wants to allow slavery and stuff.

Sep 20, 2019

Cars on Board


Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Dickinson 

U.S. Coast Guard District 7 PADET Jacksonville

  It's been two weeks since a massive auto transport ship turned on its side off the Georgia coast.
     The ship was transporting thousands of vehicles, and some of them were Alabama made.

     The Atlanta Journal/Constitution reported on Wednesday that it may take many weeks to develop a plan to salvage the ship, hopefully in one piece:

"The cargo, a mix of old and new passenger vehicles from a range of manufacturers, also contains fluids such as gasoline, engine oil and antifreeze. The salvage team is working to address how it will handle the pollutants inside the ship..."

     Although none of the vehicles were from the Montgomery Hyundai plant, a Hyudai spokesman tells about 300 were made at the Kia plant across the state line in Georgia. 
     A spokeswoman for Mercedes USA says "a few" Mercedes vehicles were on board. That doesn't account for the vast majority of the four-thousand cars on board when the ship flipped on its side.

Health: Asthma in The South

 The one fact that jumped out to me from this CDC report was the Asthma rate in the South compared to the rest of the country.

Characteristics of Asthma Visits to Physician Offices in the United States: 2012–2015 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey

Physician office visits United States 2012 - 2015

Region             #in Thou         %        #i(nThou )   %   

Northeast         190,230         20.4      2,422       23.8   

Midwest .          173,572        18.6      1,793       17.7
South               348,084        34.7     3,508        34.5
West.                219,800        23.6     2,438        24.0 

And the most recent numbers of Alabama residents with asthma are alarming. 

409,623 Alabama residents have asthma...10.9% of the population.

Yet Birmingham is the only city listed in the Southeast as "The Top 20 Most Challenging Places to Live With Asthma

Vaping Lung Problems: Alabama is The Outlier.

On Thursday Mississippi reported its first case of the lung ailments being reported by young people who vape...

...and that makes Alabama even more of an exception. 

     Why has Alabama avoided even one case when we are now surrounded by states that have reported cases? 

Sep 19, 2019

Bird Decimation

The New York Times reports:

The skies are emptying out.
The number of birds in the United States and Canada has fallen by 29 percent since 1970, scientists reported on Thursday. There are 2.9 billion fewer birds taking wing now than there were 50 years ago.
The analysis, published in the journal Science, is the most exhaustive and ambitious attempt yet to learn what is happening to avian populations. The results have shocked researchers and conservation organizations.

1st Air National Guard F-35s Being Delivered Vermont

TIME magazine reports:
(MONTPELIER, Vt.) — The Vermont Air National Guard is due to take delivery of the first two of what will become 20 F-35 fighter aircrafts, the first guard unit to receive the next-generation fighter.
The aircraft will be based at the Burlington International Airport and are being flown to Vermont on Thursday from the factory in Fort Worth, Texas.
The delivery follows years of hard work, planning and missions in the guard’s previous aircraft, F-16s that flew continuously for weeks over New York after the 9/11 attacks and in multiple combat tours in Iraq and other areas of the Middle East.

At last report, the other Air National Guard F-35s are due to arrive here in Montgomery in 2023.

Prayer is the Answer ro "Rampant Evil".

    So says the Sheriff of Blount Count Alabama. 
    He's scheduled a prayer vigil after several crimes in the county.

The sheriff says the “stressful times and most recent events” have made it “evident that evil is running rampant among us.” The vigil is set for Oct. 2 at a high school."

     I'm not sure prayer is the answer. Look at the three-page list of churches in Blount County.

Alabama is Trump Country and Anti-Union and Pro Business... why is Alabama ranked so low in this Trump supporting, pro-business, anti-union, U.S. Chamber of Commerce survey?

Alabama ranks 42nd on the list of states, despite a Republican dominated legislature. In fact every one of the statewide elected positions, from the Governor on down, are filled by Republicans, and have been for a decade or more.

HERE's the complete data.

Sep 18, 2019

$pace Dollar$

     Only when you're discussing projects in space is "a few Billion Dollars" considered  "cheap".

Researchers say that's how "little" it would cost to create a kind of elevator between the Earth and The Moon. Really!

Observer Media has the story:

"Columbia astronomy students Zephyr Penoyre and Emily Sandford proposed the idea of a “lunar space elevator,” which is exactly what it sounds like—a very long elevator connecting the moon and our planet."

Going UP!

New State Abortion Report

  • Alabama has 59 Counties in which there is no clinic. (93%).

  • Alabama has the 4th largest decrease in abortions in The South (-23%) between 2014 and 2017. 

  • The report from the Guttmacher Institute* is HERE. It suggests the decrease is not because of state legislative restrictions:
    "the (national) decline in abortions appears to be related to declines in births and pregnancies overall. There are a number of potential explanations for this broad decline, some more plausible than others"
*Your support enables the Guttmacher Institute to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights in the United States and globally through our interrelated program of high-quality research, evidence-based advocacy and strategic communications.


1st EVER N.Y. Times mention of Alabama, and of Montgomery, 32 years after Statehood.

     On this date in 1851, the N.Y. Times reports on a meeting to be held in Montgomery in the new year of 1852, a decade before the start of the Civil War. A harbinger of what was to come.

     But above that notice was an item about Alabama people being "apprehensive" about a famine. With a meeting held in Pickens County. That was four years after the state capitol was moved from nearby Tuscaloosa to Montgomery.

Sep 17, 2019

PR: What Does it Say When 8 PR Firms Reject Your Money?

"Hong Kong's government contacted eight public relations firms to try and rebuild the embattled city's image, but all of them declined the contract.
The city has seen months of unrest sparked by a proposed extradition bill that has since been withdrawn.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam and her government have been widely criticised for their response to protesters.
The PR firms said that "the time is not right" to restore the territory's reputation, Ms Lam told reporters."
                                                                                         From a BBC story.

Segregated Schools

"Democrats (75%) are more than twice as likely as Republicans (35%) to say that segregation in schools is serious, with the views of political independents falling about halfway in between."

Here's the full report.

Sep 16, 2019

Kaepernick Wins.

 The Kaepernick kneeling ad. It won an Emmy Sunday night.
“Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.”
On Sunday night, the commercial became award-winning. “Dream Crazy” was named outstanding commercial at the Creative Arts Emmys, the first time Nike has won the award since 2002.

Nike’s stock surged in the days after the campaign debuted, increasing the company’s value by more than $6 billion two weeks later.

Who needs to play in an NFL team?

Sep 15, 2019

Sound Familiar? I Think I Know Someone......


Thank goodness there's FINALLY a name for this disorder...."Age-Activated Attention Deficit Disorder"
This is how it manifests:
  • I decide to water my garden.
  • As I turn on the hose in the driveway, I look over at my car and decide it needs washing.
  • As I start toward the garage, I notice mail on the porch table that I brought up from the mail box earlier.
  • I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car.
  • I lay my car keys on the table, put the junk mail in the garbage can under the table,
  • ...And notice that the can is full, So, I decide to put the bills back on the table and take out the garbage first.
  • But then I think, since I'm going to be near the mailbox when I take out the garbage anyway,
  • I may as well pay the bills first.
  • I take my check book off the table and see that there is only one check left.
  • My extra checks are in my desk in the study, So I go inside the house to my desk where
  • I find the can of Pepsi I'd been drinking.
  • I'm going to look for my checks, but first I need to push the Pepsi aside so that I don't accidentally knock it over.
  • The Pepsi is getting warm, so I decide to put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold.
  • As I head toward the kitchen with the Pepsi, a vase of flowers on the counter catches my eye--they need water. I put the Pepsi on the counter and discover my reading glasses that I've been searching for all morning.
  • I decide I better put them back on my desk, but first I'm going to water the flowers.
  • I set the glasses back down on the counter , fill a container with water and suddenly spot the TV remote. Someone left it on the kitchen table.
  • But then I realize that tonight when I go to watch TV,  I'll be looking for the remote, but I won't remember that it's on the kitchen table, So I decide to put it back in the den where it belongs,
  • But first I'll water the flowers.
  • I pour some water in the flowers, but quite a bit of it spills on the floor. So, I set the remote back on the table, get some towels and wipe up the spill.Then, I head down the hall trying to remember what I was planning to do.
At the end of the day:
The car isn't washed, The bills aren't paid, There is a warm can of flat Pepsi sitting on the counter,
The flowers don't have enough water,
There is still only 1 check in my check book, I can't find the remote,
I can't find my glasses,
And I don't remember what I did with the car keys.
Then, when I try to figure out why nothing got done today.  I'm really baffled because I know I was busy all day, and I'm really tired.
I realize this is a serious problem, and I'll try to get some help for it, but first I'll check my e-mail....
Do me a favor. Forward this message to everyone you know, because I don't remember those I've sent it to.
If it was you who sent it to me,
I apologize!  Don't laugh -- if this isn't you YET, YOUR day is coming!

(From Tim: I got this from a Vietnam Radio/TV group but it did not have a writer's name on it to give credit. Nonetheless, I COULD have written it from experience!)

Three Chords & The Truth

     Part one of the latest massive (16 hour) documentary by Ken Burns premiers tonight at 7:00PM on Alabama Public TV. 

    It's titled simply enough "Country Music", and there should be plenty to entertain, with no shortage of Alabama connections. 

     There's Hank, of course, but tribute is also paid to the man who taught him how. "Tee Tot"...Rufus Paye...the 8 year old African-American who met Williams in Greenville, helped make him a star, and then vanished into obscurity.

     He died in a charity hospital and was buried 80 years ago in Lincoln Cemetery in Montgomery. Exactly where his body was interred isn't known, but a marker was placed belatedly at the entrance to the cemetery in 1999.

    Hank, of course, is also buried in Montgomery, and his grave-site is among the best visited sites in the city.

     You can watch a combination concert/preview of the Country Music documentary series online HERE.

A Neighborly Project

    Some of the residents of the Old Cloverdale neighborhood in Montgomery joined forces and bought a lot of property several years ago. Since then they have turned that corner lot into a community garden...and more.

     There are raised beds in the garden, and residents can rent one, agreeing to plant in it and keep it up. A great deal for apartment dwellers

 There are also two of those little free libraries in the garden. You can borrow a book, or donate one.

You can learn more about the project on their website, or on their Facebook page

The garden is at 1128 Woodward Avenue.

     The city should help other neighborhoods do the same, perhaps donating dilapidated land now owned by the city. It could be a great project for whomever becomes Mayor after the runoff election three weeks from Tuesday! Mayor-Elect Reed or Woods?

Create enough of them and it becomes a yearly competition......Best New Community Garden for 2020...Most Active Community Garden for 2021...donate the edibles to the food bank? Endless possibilities, and all of them helping to build communities.

Sep 14, 2019

Mr. Mayor-Elect?

 I have a proposed city project for the new mayor. 

One already exists, why not copy it across the city's 100+ neighborhoods? Details in the morning.